Sit down with your family, show them beautiful pictures of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World, and give an explanation of each while pointing out where they are located on a globe or map. Help them understand THESE are seven of many beautiful reasons why we need to take care of our earth. Ask them which wonders they would love to one day see in person–you might be surprised! You can click on the name of each wonder to find out more information you can teach your children.
Here is the order in which I would most like to see these Seven Natural Wonders: Aurora Borealis in Alaska; Great Barrier Reef in Australia; Victoria Falls in Africa; Paricutin Volcano in Mexico; Mount Everest in Nepal; Rio de Janiero Harbor in Brazil; Grand Canyon in Nevada. I will consider myself lucky to see any of these in any order!
In my family we make it a goal to have unstructured play in nature every day. Unstructured play in my family means giving my children access to a safe environment without distractions like toys, playground equipment, and electronics and give them the opportunity to explore nature and learn to be creative on their own.
When we spend time in nature I notice a huge behavioral change. My children tend to be calmer, more obedient and happier when we’ve spent time outside. Child development specialists have preached the benefits of nature play for years, some of which include an increase in your children’s academic potential, social skills and creativity.
During the cold months of winter and often into the first parts of spring, our goal of spending time in nature can be difficult. If the temperature is really low or the rain coming down in sheets, it keeps us from staying outside, but the following is a quick activity my girls enjoy doing even when nature isn’t so friendly.
After a new snow or rainfall they love to investigate our yard, the park or the empty field by our home for fresh animal tracks. They become little detectives trying to imagine what kind of animal made the snowy or muddy track and what journey it was taking. They even enjoy making up stories about the creature throughout the rest of the day. With spring showers still in full swing your children should have ample opportunity for some outdoor detective work!
Cultivating a child’s love of nature will help nurture her love for the earth. In turn she will care more for the environment and have a deeper understanding about the importance of being eco-friendly. Investigating the nature close to your home is the perfect way to start! If your children care for the nature they see every day they will come to love nature everywhere.
We love investigating our neighborhood and the beauty around us. The girls and I enjoy going on “Nature Photography Walks.” We carry two cameras and take pictures of anything that strikes our fancy along the way.
When we get home we put our snapshots in our photography book along with commentary from the girls. I put my picture and thoughts of the nature object beside their photos and descriptions. It is a fun way to see how how very differently children think, what in nature matters most to them, and it makes a wonderful keepsake for the family!
I grew up in Maryland with the woods as my backyard. Miles and miles of in my mind unexplored forests. On Saturday my Dad would take us on long hikes through the woods trying to find a little river to fish at. We would see many exciting things along the way, sometimes we would collect different things and some things we would jot down notes about. The following week my mother would take us to the library to get books to help us identify the birds, leaves, plants, even snakes we saw on our adventures.
My family moved to Arizona for a few months and then moved back east to Virgina and I was glad to be back home to my woods.
Now we live in Utah and to be honest I am intimated by these huge mountains, I don’t know what to do with them! I don’t know how to go about exploring them or using them. There is a great site Nature For Kids that is giving me ideas on how to tackle these huge things.
But it got me thinking that exploring the outdoors as my parents did with us really is the perfect (and free!) family activity.
So since I have younger kids and it is still chilly outside (yes its June and it was chilly today and windy as you can see) we went exploring to a field of flowers. It was simple but so much fun.
Here a few exploring the outdoor ideas I have done:
Finding a new fishing spot
Finding a new fishing hole
Collecting leaves, pine cones, shells, even bugs (be careful!) and taking them home to catalog
Identifying plants and trees
Nature Scavenger Hunt
Collecting and Identifying Wildflowers
Finding tadpoles or other water life at your nearby pond
Creekwalking (something my husban’d mother loved to do with her kids)
Beach (I nannied a family with a beach house and we explorded the rocks and sand for hours before even getting in the water!)
What have you done with your family to explore the outdoors?
The girls and I are having such a great time going through the activities in this book. Our top favorite so far Roly Poly Races which you will have to hurry and do before it gets to cold and they all disappear.
To have a Roly Poly Race/War/Battle draw a circle with some mud and place the Roly Polies inside. Whatever Roly Poly rolls out of the circle first loses!
How fun and seriously what planning and work goes into preparing for this Family Activity? None.
I went to Deerfield Elementary School in Edgewood, Maryland. My most vivid memory from that time was a Nature Activity we did every winter just before spring. We would prepare pine cones for the birds by covering them with goodies and then hang them on the large pine trees outside our classroom windows. The best part was when the big fire engine arrived. A handful of lucky children were chosen to help hang their pine cones at the very top of the tree–with help from the fireman, of course.
Even though spring officially began March 20th many areas of the country, Utah included, are still feeling the cold. I decided to reminisce about those Edgewood Elementary days and make those same goodie-covered pine cones with my daughters.
When I told Abby there might be some little birdies having a hard time finding food, she was very upset and wanted to help immediately! We simply took a container of almost-gone peanut butter, added some birdseed and nuts and spread it on the pine cone. We hung it on the tree in our front yard and placed some orange slices on the branches. The afternoon ended with a discussion about birds and trees– a very peaceful afternoon indeed.
If you can see the moon or sun through them, they are high-altitude clouds. If they are thick then poor weather is on its way in a day or two. Want to know when the poor weather will arrive? Take a look at how fast or slow the clouds are moving–the faster the clouds, the sooner the poor weather. Want to know where the poor weather is headdr? Just look in what direction the clouds are pointing!
If you cannot see the moon or sun through the clouds then they are middle- or low-altitude clouds. If they are middle altitude clouds they may cover the entire sky. If they are gray with a hint of blue or fluffy white with a hint of gray with a lot of contrast between light and dark then prepare for rain in a half a day or so.
If they aren’t either of the above then you’re looking at low-altitude clouds. These clouds are really low and appear to touch mountains and tall buildings. If they look like a low, gray sheet get ready for rain quickly!
If your clouds look like low, fluffy marshmallows in the sky then the whether is fine. However if they start to move vertically upward (e.g. anvil shapes moving upward in the sky), be prepared for a possible quick thunderstorm!
This is a Simple Practice Page…trying out posts, pictures, categories and theme functions. This is a Simple Practice Page…trying out posts, pictures, categories and theme functions. This is a Simple Practice Page…trying out posts, pictures, categories and theme functions. This is a Simple Practice Page…trying out posts, pictures, categories and theme functions.